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Notre Dame announces 2-year deal to play Ohio State

Notre Dame players get ready practice Saturday Aug. 9 2014 South Bend Ind. Notre Dame opens seasagainst Rice home Saturday

Notre Dame players get ready to practice Saturday Aug. 9, 2014 in South Bend, Ind. Notre Dame opens the season against Rice at home Saturday Aug. 30. (AP Photo/Joe Raymond)

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Updated: September 4, 2014 7:47PM

Notre Dame’s series with Michigan ends Saturday. And the Irish found quite the Big Ten replacement.

Notre Dame announced a two-year, home-and-home series with Ohio State starting in 2022.

The teams will play Sept. 3, 2022, at Ohio Stadium in Columbus, Ohio, and Sept. 23, 2023, at Notre Dame Stadium.

“Any time you talk about Notre Dame and Ohio State meeting in a football game, that event automatically is going to have huge national significance,” Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly said in a statement. “For fans and alumni of the two schools, not to mention college football fans in general, these games will be great attractions.”

Ohio State holds a 3-2 lead in the all-time series. The teams last played in 2006 Fiesta Bowl, a 34-20 Ohio State win. The series will mark the first regular-season contest between the schools since 1996.

“I am excited we are able once again to bring these two programs together on the football field,” Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick said in a statement. “Football games between Notre Dame and Ohio State make great sense from a strength-of-schedule standpoint. In addition, with (Ohio State athletic director) Gene Smith having both played and coached football at Notre Dame—and with (Ohio State head coach) Urban Meyer having served as an assistant football coach at Notre Dame—there are some obvious, high-profile connections between our two institutions.”

Note: The five players being held out of games and practices because of suspected academic dishonesty have not participated in team meetings.

But Kelly wouldn’t hesitate to put them in Saturday’s game if any of individuals were cleared to play.

“If I got them back (Friday), they’d play on Saturday,” Kelly said Thursday.

The status of wide receiver DaVaris Daniels, cornerback KeiVarae Russell, defensive lineman Ishaq Williams, linebacker Kendall Moore and safety Eilar Hardy remained unchanged as of Thursday.

“I was told that hearings were going to take place very quickly,” Kelly said. “That was on Monday. Today’s Thursday.”


Twitter: @lamondpope

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